Everyone approaches divorce in their own way. You might take an action you think makes all the sense in the world, but it could cause more problems than it solves. That is why you should talk to an attorney before you do something like:
Start new accounts
Eventually during the divorce process, you will need to divide assets according to Washington law. That is a formal process, and starting new accounts early will not make things easier on you. In the worst cases, the court may consider your actions a sign of hiding assets.
Sell off things you don’t need
This, once again, is a misguided action to take early in a divorce. Your property is community property and any sales you make are going to be a part of the marital estate. It will still find itself equally divided.
Pick fights with your soon to be ex
Picking a fight with an ex, refusing counseling, essentially making a difficult situation worse, is not going to make for an easier divorce. It will heighten the difficulty and contentiousness of the process and potentially lengthen it.
Look for a new relationship
You may feel that your marriage is over, but legally it is not. New relationships at any point in the divorce process complicate everything. It may not necessarily have a tangible impact on the proceedings, but it definitely can cause friction where there does not need to be any.
This includes purchasing a home or moving to a new area. Unless your physical safety is in jeopardy, you want to avoid such a massive change.
Tell them you want a divorce
This may seem dishonest, but the fact is asking for a divorce prior to looking into and understanding the full divorce process, is risky. It can create a huge fight. It can create confusion. And frankly, there is a possibility your marriage can be saved by talking to a lawyer first.
The fact is going into divorce without a well-thought-out plan is a massive risk that you need to consider fully before things get out of control.